Despite the recent police beating of UVA student Martese Johnson that has sparked outrage, A$AP Ferg believes racism doesn’t exist.
The Harlem lyricist stopped by NPR’s Microphone Check to talk about his rise to stardom, being an animal lover, and the major influence Missy Elliott and J Dilla have had on his music. During the interview, Ferg, 26, was asked what he hopes listeners will glean from his music.
I want people to get some happy times from it. I want to people to get a reality from it. I want people to get the latest news. I want kids to know — I want kids from the suburbian world who don’t know what it’s like to live in the hood, I want them to get a glimpse of what it’s like in our world. And then I want my homies from the hood to get a glimpse of how Selena Gomez or Ariana Grande live because I’ve been to these places or been to they house, you know what I’m saying? So I want them to see, like, alright — I’m basically bridging the gap.
And we all listen to the same music. When I’m hanging out with them, they looking at Chris Brown performances and loving his dances or listening to A$AP records. Or Nick Jonas is listening to — bumping my stuff. Or Madonna’s son got “Work” as a ring tone. We all the same. That’s what it is about this culture of the Internet. Is everything is merged. There’s no racism with the Internet. Racism only was — is probably like five generations ago.
Ferg later clarified.
Racism been over,” Ferg said, “It’s the old people that keep on holding on to it. We don’t hold on to that s—-. We don’t know racism. We all like having — like my brother had white — my little brother had white girlfriends. And that’s regular…I think that’s classism. I don’t think it’s racism…Like, who got the biggest money. So we gon’ keep these — we gon’ oppress these people. They don’t get nothing. And it’s a pyramid. That’s how the pyramid work. You need — everybody plays a position. You need all of these soldiers or whatever to keep the big man up there. I want to be the big man. I don’t want to be like these guys holding the big man up.
Ferg isn’t the only rapper to echo these sentiments. Kanye West, who is headlining the Glastonbury Festival, said racism is a dated concept.